The Steelers are not holding onto high expectations heading into the 2022 season, but they could still outperform those opinions.
Most experts do not believe that the Steelers have what it takes to be playoff contenders this season. That is a fair criticism as the club has a couple of question marks surrounding their roster that have not instilled confidence yet. Those concerns seem like they could potentially set this team behind the eightball for making the playoffs this year.
Predicting an outcome for Pittsburgh, or any NFL team is a tough challenge this early into the schedule. Games have not been played yet and a bunch of different things could change these predictions as the season pushes further. Injuries, benching players, and other situations could occur where a game or matchup could alter the final record.
Steelers finish 3-1 through their first quarter of the season
The first four games of the season for Pittsburgh are not tough other than the first game against the Cincinnati Bengals on the road. That game might get ugly for the black and gold, which could cause early concern. The next three games after that are against clubs that missed the playoffs last year that include the New England Patriots, Cleveland Browns, and New York Jets.
Some of those games could become closer than many might expect, but that Patriots game could be the major swinging point. That is the toughest matchup to predict out of these four matchups in the early portion of the schedule for the Steelers. Starting off with a record of 3-1 would catch the eyes of many.
Steelers struggle to a 3-5 record about halfway through the schedule
This next stretch of the campaign is where the road can get rocky for this team. They have some tough battles lined up against the Buffalo Bills, Tampa Bay Buccaneers, Miami Dolphins, and the Philadelphia Eagles. Three of those four games will be on the road and that is going to make things even tougher.
It is realistic to believe that the Steelers could pull out at least one win in this duration of the schedule, but these are all tougher opponents. The Bills and Bucs will be Super Bowl contenders, with both the Eagles and Dolphins looking to fight for playoff contention as well. Getting a win in this portion of the year will be tough, and that is why Pittsburgh dropped all four in a row here. This is also when Kenny Pickett chants could be heard throughout the city as they enter their bye week.
Pittsburgh gets back to an even record of 6-6 heading into the stretch
The Steelers have some tough opponents in the four weeks following their bye week. Those games include them going up against the New Orleans Saints, Cincinnati Bengals, Indianapolis Colts, and the Atlanta Falcons. One has to wonder with the team starting to falter at 3-5 at the bye week if a quarterback change would be a wise decision, despite the tough slate of games that follow.
Pickett should get a chance to give this club a spark if this certain scenario starts to play out. It is going to be tough to go 3-1 in this stretch, but there are some flaws with some of their opponents. The Falcons are terrible, and injuries could compile for clubs during this time of the season.
The season ends with a record of 9-8 but they miss the playoffs
Pittsburgh ends their final five games of the season with a record of 3-2, which means the team finished with an overall record of 9-8. They conclude their campaign against the Baltimore Ravens, Carolina Panthers, Las Vegas Raiders, Baltimore Ravens, and the Cleveland Browns. Some of these games seem winnable right now, and the others could go in the black and gold’s favor with a couple of big plays going their way.
This season is one that will have a lot of highs and lows throughout the long 18 weeks until its completion. Pickett was able to come into the year at the halfway mark and light a spark that pushed this club in a positive direction to end the season. These predictions will change from week to week as there are a bunch of different scenarios that will happen between now and the end of the schedule.
The Steelers should still be able to overperform what most experts believe will be the outcome for this club. This does not seem like a playoff team at this current time, but it could stay in the conversation for a while.